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Guelph sees a decline in the crime severity index: StatsCan

Guelph police officer stands looking towards the downtown. Guelph police / Twitter

Guelph may be one of the safest cities in Canada.

Data from Statistics Canada revealed that the Crime Severity Index in Guelph fell 58.2 in 2021, a decrease of eight percent from 2020.

That puts Guelph as the 12th lowest of the 35 census metropolitan areas in Canada.

Guelph Police Chief Gord Cobey said in a news release, “While we are certainly pleased with these improvements, we must continue to ensure proactive investment to sustain these improvements, support the wellness of our members and ensure our community remains safe, healthy and future-ready.”

Read more: Police investigating assault of girl and dog in east end Guelph neighbourhood

Deputy Chief Darryl Goetz echoed the Chief’s sentiments.

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“It is a nice acknowledgment that we were the second best (behind Calgary) in terms of improvement,” Goetz said. “But that doesn’t mean we rest on our laurels. We continue forward to get that number down even more.”

Calgary’s index dropped 9 percent to 72.3 in 2021.

Statistics Canada notes Guelph’s decrease in the index was due to a decrease in homicide, fraud, theft of $5,000 or under, and robbery, and was partially offset by an increase in shoplifting of $5,000 or under.

Goetz said they were also able to get that index down thanks to additional resources.

“We’ve added a number of officers in the last couple of years to address crime in our streets,” said Goetz. “It is allowing the detectives and frontline officers to engage a little more, and allows us to be more proactive in terms of those who commit crimes in our communities.”

Read more: Guelph police launch security camera registry for businesses and residents

Nearby communities ranked in the index include:

  • Kitchener-Waterloo-Cambridge with a 79.4, a 6 percent increase from 2020
  • Brantford was down 7 percent from 2020 to 75.7
  • London saw a 7 percent increase to 80.1
  • Hamilton up 2 percent to 56.9

Guelph also saw a drop in the violent crime severity index in 2021 down 22 percent from 2020.

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“It’s not just the uniform presence on the streets, there is a lot behind-the-scenes work from our IT to the communications staff,” said Goetz. “It is a collaborative effort by everybody, and they all have the same goal of making the city of Guelph safer.”

 

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